The NFC Championship Game between the New Orleans Saints and Los Angeles Rams ended with a helluva lot of controversy, with everyone and their mother talking about the phantom pass interference call that refs missed. And, while refs are getting a ton of backlash on keeping the flag in their pockets on that play in the fourth quarter that, presumably, would have essentially won the game for the Saints, another non-call is getting attention, too, this one coming in overtime.
With the Saints sitting at their own 34-yard-line and faced with a 2nd-and-16, Drew Brees threw a lame duck pass as he was getting pressured by the Rams’ Dante Fowler Jr., which dropped into the arms of fellow defender John Johnson. Thing is, while the ball was floating in the air, Johnson seemed to make a sh*t ton of illegal contact with New Orleans wide receiver Michael Thomas. Take a look at the interception below.
Now, at first glance, the ball seems like it could have been deflected by Fowler at the line of scrimmage — which would have made it fair game for Johnson to make contact with Thomas. Unfortunately, for the Saints, at least, that wasn’t the case, as Brees’ arm was hit and the play should have been treated like a normal pass play, meaning Johnson should have been called for pass interference, defensive holding, illegal contact or straight-up mugging, because dude was all over Michael Thomas.
Sadly, the refs — many of whom are from Los Angeles, with one even being a former Rams player, coincidentally — missed the call and the interception stood. A few plays later, the Rams ended up winning the NFC Championship Game and punched their ticket to Super Bowl LIII. So, yeah, while the zebras missed the most blatant pass interference call that everyone’s talking about, they also blew it on this one, too; and Saints fans should be pissed as f*ck about it.